View Full Version : How to get into hunting

January 11, 2009, 09:56 PM
This is my first post so I will start with a stupid question. I live in the Raleigh area of NC and if there are a few members thet live in the area that can tell me how to get started hunting would be great. I have only ever been racoon hunting in Maine but I would like to try deer, turkey and boar hunting but I have no clue on what to do.

Any advice yall have for me would be greatly appreciated.

BTW after much reading here as a guest I decided I wanted a new rifle. I went out and bought a Marlin 1895 chambered in .45-70. What a cannon it is!! I love it!! It is a little big for deer but I have another lever rifle for that or I can just use reduced loads but thanks to all who post thier hunting stories and pics.


January 11, 2009, 10:22 PM
Johnny, The only way to "get into hunting" is to start with scouting... Tracks are primary specie ID but then you work on spotting things like scat, rubs, wallows, food source and water locations. work the off season with intent to hunt next fall. Hogs may be year around but can be tuff to locate current activity as they move in groups and can be here tonight and 5 miles away tomorrow.
Ask specific questions as they come to you and many folks will try to help!
Welcome as a member to TFL....

January 11, 2009, 10:38 PM
To me, the best thing for the beginning hunter to hunt is squirrels hands down. Hunting them little boogers teaches woodsmanship that will last a lifetime. They have great ears and eyes and are smart little devils. After a season or two doing that you can step up to big game.


January 12, 2009, 03:02 AM
First thing first. You need a license.

After that, try small game. Fun to hunt and its a challenge.

I started off hunting with air rifles, but now I'm using .22LR's. Soon enough I'll be getting a single shot 20 gauge or 410, not quite sure yet.

Hunting may seem common sense, but you have to know what youre doing when hunting. If you go out and just shoot, you wont have much luck.

January 12, 2009, 03:45 AM
I started out by reading a lot of hunting magazine articles in Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, Field & Stream, Petersen's Hunting, etc...
Many of these and their back issues are also available for take out from the local library.
There's also books on tracking, dressing game, and hunting techniques along with many hundreds of internet articles from online magazines and such.
People need to hunt down the information that they want and read it.
Take your hunter conservation safety course to get your license and the instructors will teach many hunting basics.
Learn how to use a map and compass so you can at least find your way around 1 or 2 state forests or game management areas really well.
Buy the right equipment that you need to field dress your game as recommended in the safety course.
I started out hunting squirrels and learned how to cook them and eat their meat. Just by being in the woods I learned a lot more about how deer live and survive, and I started seeing deer, their droppings and spotted other animals and their sign too.
A Remington .410 pump is still my favorite squirrel medicine.
But you won't shoot many animals in the woods if you don't read about how to go about it by being quiet when you're stalking them.
It's all about seeing them before they see you. Don't let them ever figure out what you're up to, even if that means tip toeing around through the crunchy leaves and hiding behind trees if necessary.
If they see you first the chances are that you will lose your chance to shoot them and eat them. Don't ever think that they don't have a clue.
If you come home from a hunt empty handed enough times then you'll eventually force yourself to learn how to hunt. It's much better to read about other people's experiences first to better prepare yourself about how to hunt the intended game though. :)

January 12, 2009, 06:57 AM
Thanks for the advice. I am going to go to the hunter safety course and see what I can learn. I have considered small game right behind my house that would give me some clue on how to hunt other animals.

January 12, 2009, 07:17 AM
I personally think that if you could find a mentor in your area to help teach and get you started you would be way ahead VS trying to learn on your own as far as deer hunting anyway. If you ask around or hang around most sporting good stores you may luck out unless some on here in your area decides they would like to help.

January 12, 2009, 07:56 AM
you need to find A person that is A hunter that would be willing to assist you . The hunter safety course is A great ideal maybe you will meet someone there that can be of help to you. I'm not saying you can't do this alone but you really need someone with experience to help you. There are thousands of acres of Game Lands in NC that you can use with the proper permits. Good Luck and Happy Hunting

January 12, 2009, 08:02 AM
I am going to go to the hunter safety course and see what I can learn.

It should be a good course and I think you'll learn a lot from it. If any of your state Game Wardens are present at the course, I'd speak to them about any clubs or people that help out new hunters.

As far as the 45-70, it is the perfect close range deer rifle.

Art Eatman
January 12, 2009, 11:08 AM
Spend as much time as you can "out there". Early morning at sunrise; late afternoon before sunset. Just sit and watch, mostly. In between, practice learning how to walk quietly. Clothes not going "weep" against weeds or limbs.

Develop the reflex of glancing down at the ground to figure out your next three or four steps while looking around, and then glancing again for the next three or four steps. That way you don't break sticks or roll rocks. Remember, you don't see critters when you're looking at your feet.

There is a lot of book material on tracks. What critters make them, and what you can tell from the style of the imprint. Same for habits and behaviors of critters.

You don't need any license to look and learn.

January 12, 2009, 02:38 PM
read read read.....there are great books out there on hunting pretty much any animal that will take you from absolute beginner to moderately experienced in no time. When i take up any new activity, the first thing i do is read everything i can on it.......why learn the hard way slow when you can learn from an expert fast.

Brian Pfleuger
January 12, 2009, 03:30 PM
I know this seems overly simplistic but....

Get a license and go sit in the woods, when you see something for which you have a license (or no license is required), shoot it.

Learn the basics, like don't cut a deers intestines open when you're gutting it, and learn the rest by doing and asking and reading.

You'll make mistakes, you'll waste some time. The first time you gut a deer will be a mess but you won't care. You'll be so excited your hands will still be shaking. Half the fun is sitting in the woods, watching and learning. There's no substitute for getting out there and doing it.

January 12, 2009, 05:07 PM
My mistake-
I went with a friend hunting for deer. Both of us haven't been hunting for a whole long time. Hes 18 and im 16. He ended up getting a buck and had no clue how to gut it out, so I stepped in.:D I completely forgot about getting the lungs and the heart out.:o His farther later finished it at home.

Small game hunting hunting has helped me get familiar with gutting and skinning a animal, along with all the body parts.